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Eric Peterson, Published June 09 2012

Big inning vaults Winnipeg to victory against RedHawks

FARGO – A late-starting offense and a collection of fielding and base running miscues doomed Fargo-Moorhead on Saturday at Newman Outdoor Field.

The Winnipeg Goldeyes took advantage, exploding for eight runs in the sixth inning en route to a 9-4 American Association baseball victory before 3,095 fans.

“I’m just lost right now. I’m frustrated,” said RedHawks catcher Todd Jennings, who went 1-for-4 with an RBI. “It seems like every time we try to build momentum, something happens.”

The RedHawks (9-13) have lost two games in a row and have dropped 6½ games behind first-place Winnipeg (15-6) in the North Division. The Goldeyes have chance to complete a three-game series sweep at 1 p.m. today at Newman.

“We’ve got to play and hope something better happens,” RedHawks manager Doug Simunic said.

Winnipeg trailed 1-0 heading into the sixth inning. That’s when the Goldeyes vaulted into the lead for good.

Catcher Luis Alen sparked the rally with an RBI single to right field. Goldeyes shortstop David Narodowski had a two-run double and center fielder Chris Roberson added a two-run single. Yurendell de Caster capped the rally with an RBI single that staked the Goldeyes to an 8-1 lead.

Winnipeg designated hitter Jon Weber batted twice in the sixth. He led off the inning by reaching on an error and later added an RBI double. That early error led to five unearned Winnipeg runs in the sixth. F-M committed three errors for the game.

“We’re making stupid errors, too,” Simunic said. “We’ve got guys out of position it looks like to me.”

RedHawks right-handed reliever Kevin Fuqua allowed five of the Winnipeg runs in the game-changing sixth inning. Fuqua surrendered five hits in the sixth after coming on in relief of starter lefty Jake Laber.

“I sort of left Fuqua in the game too long, my fault, I shouldn’t have done that,” Simunic said. “But I was livid. Every time we’ve put him in the game the last two or three times, he pitches to the big part of the plate. … After I left him in and the damage was done, he pitched a couple of perfect innings.”

Fuqua had his ERA increase to 7.62 after Saturday’s outing. Fuqua had a 1.60 ERA in 21 appearances for the RedHawks a season ago.

“That guy was something for us last year. He was something special,” Simunic said. “Now we can’t even get him to get a guy out with guy on. … We feel for the guy.”

The RedHawks threatened to get back into the game with a three-run eighth inning. That rally trimmed the Winnipeg lead to 8-4 heading into the final inning.

F-M had a chance to add to that eighth-inning surge, but Sergio Pedroza got tagged out after over-running third base on an infield grounder. If Pedroza would have stayed put at third, F-M would have had the bases loaded with two outs, down four runs and leadoff hitter Zach Penprase coming to bat.

The RedHawks took a 1-0 lead in the fifth inning after left fielder Aharon Eggleston cracked an RBI single to right field. That’s all the offense F-M was able to muster in the first seven innings.

“We can’t get anything going early,” Jennings said. “I don’t know if we don’t have enough energy or we’re not ready to play until the middle part of the game. … We just can’t get a lead early.”

NOTES: Right-handed pitcher Tyler Herron (0-1, 3.31 ERA) is scheduled to start today for the RedHawks. The Goldeyes are expected to counter with right-hander Matt Rusch (2-0, 2.31 ERA). … The RedHawks are 3-9 at Newman Outdoor Field this season.

WINNIPEG REDHAWKS

ab r h bi ab r h bi

Kendall 2b 4 0 0 0 Pnprse ss 5 0 1 0

Robrsn cf 5 1 2 2 Rdrgz 1b 5 0 1 0

Weber dh 5 3 2 1 Dlgdo dh 5 1 1 0

De cstr 1b 4 1 3 1 Jcksn cf 4 1 1 1

Alen c 4 1 1 1 Jnngs c 4 1 1 1

Mzzola rf 4 0 0 1 Pdrza rf 3 0 0 0

Day lf 3 1 1 0 Stvll 3b 4 1 1 1

Crpntr lf 1 0 0 0 Egglstn lf 3 0 2 0

Ramon 3b 3 1 0 0 Cota 2b 3 0 0 0

Nrdwski ss 4 1 1 2

Totals 37 9 10 8 Totals 36 4 8 3

W 000 008 001–9 10 2

F 000 010 030–4 8 3

2B–Weber (7), de Caster (6), Day (4), Narodowski (2), Delgado (6). HP–Alen (1). SF–Massola (2). SB–Roberson 2 (6), Stovall (5). LOB–Winnipeg 6, F-M 8. E–Kendall (7), Ramon (6), Rodriguez (3), Stovall 2 (5).

WINNIPEG

IP H R ER BB SO

Salamida, W 7Zc 6 1 1 1 1

Carter Zc 2 3 0 2 0

Downing 1Zc 0 0 0 0 0

REDHAWKS

IP H R ER BB SO

Laber, L 5 3 3 2 2 2

Fuqua 3 5 5 5 1 1

Rivers 1 2 1 1 0 1

Umpires–Home: McCaffrey. First: Linton. Third: Anderson. Time–2:51. A–3,095.

Readers can reach Forum reporter

Eric Peterson at (701) 241-5513.

Peterson’s blog can be found

at peterson.areavoices.com